210 HISTORY OF PERSIA CHAP, preserved, congratulates Tamerlane on his great victory over the Turks. Both letters were conveyed by John Greenlaw,1 an English Minorite or Friar Preacher who was resident at Tabriz and is termed Archbishop John. The Castilian Embassy to the Court of Samarcand. —Henry III. of Castile, son-in-law of " time-honour'd Lancaster," was noted for the embassies which he de- spatched to remote parts of the world, chiefly, it is to be supposed, with a view to forming alliances which should act as a check on the Osmanlis and neighbouring Moslems, but also with the purpose of extending the fame of Spain and of gaining knowledge of other countries. We learn that two of his envoys were present at the battle of Angora, and that Tamerlane dismissed them after his victory with an ambassador of his own, who carried rich presents of jewels and fair women to the King of Castile. In continuance of this diplomatic inter- course Ruy Gonzalez di Clavijo2 was despatched to the Court of Tamerlane on a second embassy in 1403. Thanks to the careful diary of this trusty old knight, we possess a vivid and most interesting contemporary account of the Great Conqueror. Starting from Cadiz, accompanied by the ambassador whom Tamerlane had sent to the Court of Castile, the travellers experienced danger from both storms and currents, and upon reaching Rhodes were unable to obtain any accurate information as to the whereabouts of Tamerlane. They decided to make for Karabagh in Azerbaijan, and in pursuance of this design landed at Trebizond and proceeded by the well-known route to the frontier town of Khoi. There they met ambassadors from the Sultan of Egypt bearing gifts to Tamerlane, among them being " a beast called Jornufaf . * . which was a wonderful sight" ; and the two embassies travelled eastwards together. Clavijo describes the beautiful mosques of Tabriz * 1 Vide Original Letters illustrative of English History (third aeries, vol. i, pp, 54-58), by Sir Henry Ellis. I have to thank Mr. A. G. Ellis for this reference. 3 Vtde Embassy to the Court of Tmour, translated by Sir Clements Markham (Halcluyt Society). a Giraffe.